Round three, the most recent round, was up 4 per cent on an average audience measure when compared to the same round last year with a figure of 28,000.
Last season, round three of the AFLW was a standalone round on Fox Footy, but this year all but one of the women’s games were bumped off the main channel thanks to the men’s Marsh Community Series.
Sunday’s Geelong vs Adelaide game is the most-watched AFLW game ever on pay-TV not to be broadcast on the Fox Footy channel, with 41,000 viewers.
Meanwhile, Channel Seven’s ratings have suffered because AFLW games had to be bumped onto 7mate due to the bushfire relief cricket match and charity concert on February 9th and 16th respectively.
The free-to-air broadcaster’s average national audience per game for AFLW is 150,000, down 19 per cent on 2019.
The metropolitan audience is down 21.8 per cent on 2019.
While the interruption to the broadcast schedule has caused Channel Seven to broadcast more matches off the main channel so far in 2020, there will be an increase from last season on games on the main channel.
Adelaide and Perth will have nine games broadcast on Channel Seven for the rest of the year (up from eight in 2019). Melbourne will have nine (up from six) and Sydney nine (up from seven). Brisbane had nine last year and will have the same this year.
Sources at Channel Seven said they were confident the ratings would improve as the season went on and were not too worried because of the small sample size.
Foxtel shows all AFLW games, while every game is also available for streaming for free on the AFLW website and app.
Anthony is a sports reporter at The Age.